Illness Wisdom, After Thirteen Years

Here are some things I’ve learned about illness in the last thirteen years:

  • A life-changing illness can turn your world upside down—and, if we are too caught up in the mad rush of life, this may be the very point.
  • Illness can help us to better ‘listen to our souls,’ the quiet voice of our conscience.
  • Illness doesn’t mean you are a bad person and it’s payback time. Illness can be the result of living an imbalanced life, with the pendulum swung too far to the right or the left, and our souls call us back to the middle path—with illness.
  • Illness can come about due to imbalances in the lifetime before this one. From the ‘bigger-picture’ space between lives, we may choose an illness to gain an understanding we could not earn in any other way.
  • Doctors, scientists, pharmaceutical companies don’t know everything and they can’t fix us and our chronic illnesses. They try to help us with symptoms. Whatever healing we experience will be because we called for it. Likewise, we may not call for healing because our illness is necessary for now. Look at the bigger picture.
  • Being sick can force us to acknowledge things we don’t want to, such as: People need each other. We all need love and friendship and, sometimes, help. Ask your friends and family for help when you need it, but be as independent as you can. This builds our self-worth.
  • Illness means looking deeper to understand ‘the meaning of life.’ It means seeing beyond our bodies.
  • Illness may mean facing the end of our earth-days sooner than we’d like. This shoves us within, where the answers lie.
  • Illness means ‘different’ and possibly, not attractive. You may lose some friends. Know it’s not because of you—some people just can’t handle a different version of you, or sick people in general. Some people may not see the inner you, but some will and that’s real contact.
  • Last, smile at yourself in the mirror—sometimes this cracks me up. Smile at other people when you’re out; most will smile back. Be as kind as you can and kindness will circle back to you. Love yourself and love your life, just as it is. You will grow through it all.
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